Defining the Right CFO Profile for Your Organization

Defining the Right CFO Profile for Your Organization

When it comes to hiring a CFO (Chief Financial Officer) for your organization it is important to consider which type of CFO, their characteristics and skills will be best suited. Every organization has different needs, growth goals and leadership teams assembled. Before you begin your next CFO executive search you should have a full understanding of which personas you will be targeting in your search. 

We’ve outlined 4 considerations to find the right CFO profile for your organization.

1. Alignment with Your Strategy

The first consideration is to understand what you are trying to achieve. Your search criteria should align with your corporate strategy and goals. Are you looking at possible M&A activity? If so, then looking for a CFO with a proven track record with mergers and acquisitions as well as building strategic plans would be the best fit. Does your organization work off of recurring revenue models? If so then look for CFOs with experience at subscription-based companies who understand the nuances and the right metrics to track for your type of business.  

2. Leadership team composition

Complete an analysis of the current makeup on your leadership team. Understand where the knowledge and skill gaps are and evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of your C-Suite. Identifying what expertise and diversity would bring added value to your entire leadership group will help to develop the CFO profile and success for your search.

3. Finance team composition

How big is your finance team? How hands-on with the technical or tactical finance functions will your CFO need to be. If handling some of the basic financial tasks, compliance and reporting is a struggle you’ll want to look for a CFO with experience standardizing procedures and the ability to report data in a way to make informed decisions. Straightening out the technical systems and processes to be able to use financial data to drive the strategy and organizational growth should be the first order of business. 

If your finance function is already setup with successful processes, compliance and reporting then focusing your search on CFOs with more strategic insight and team management will be the way to go.

4. Adaptability

The CFO role is ever-evolving with new technologies and efficiencies, and your CFO will need to be agile and adapt a culture of learning and improvement to effectively deliver analytics that are meaningful and act as a change agent for the organization. COVID has brought forth the need for CFOs and executives to have the ability to build frameworks to quickly assess new business opportunities and continually analyze their performance to pivot or optimize when needed. 

Download our Complete Guide to Hiring a CFO for more information and considerations for your next CFO or senior finance leader search. 

Keynote Search – Executive Search Firm

Keynote Search is an executive search and recruitment firm with extensive experience with CFO and senior finance leader searches. We find more qualified executives through an enhanced search process, screen them more effectively, and support their success with our collaborative Post-Placement Integration program.